Sports Academy Administration

Diane Nelson

Diane Nelson

Director of Instruction

Diane Nelson, Director of Instruction, is founder of West Vancouver Schools Premier Academy programs.

Chosen as one of Canada’s Outstanding Principals in 2012 by the Learning  Partnership, Diane was selected for her ability to communicate a compelling vision, to engage the community by consistently bringing together a highly knowledgeable and competent team of teachers, coaches, instructors, and other community members to work together to deliver quality programs for student-athletes.  Diane is an exceptional leader, one who continues to lay the foundation for the success of her students and the betterment of the community through a strong and vibrant public education system.

Twice nominated (2002 & 2012) for the YWCA Women of Distinction Award in the categories of Entrepreneurship, as well as Education, Training & Development, Diane has been honoured for her achievements that contribute to the well-being and future of the community. The YWCA Women of Distinction Award is recognized as one of Canada’s most prestigious awards for women.

diane-nelson-awardWith over 30 years experience in education, as both a teacher and administrator, Diane has obtained her Bachelor of Education, Diploma in Counseling Psychology, and Master’s in Educational Administration, all from the University of British Columbia.

As a MindUP Trainer, Diane has provided numerous workshops and in-service for teachers to help them deliver an evidence-based curriculum that helps foster social and emotional awareness, enhance psychological well-being, and promote academic success. Diane inspires educators to create an optimistic classroom that promotes and develops mindful attention to oneself and others, tolerance of differences, and the capacity of each student to grow as a human being and a learner.

An educational consultant for the Vancouver Canucks’ Community Partnership Program since 2005, Diane is the creator and author of the character education program called Fin’s Friends. The program was written for teachers to help them provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to enhance ethical and responsible behaviour. This valuable classroom resource for teachers assists them with the teaching of social responsibility and character building. The program, written for Grades K-3, is being taught by primary teachers in over 3800 classrooms around the province. To date, the program is being used in over 35% of all K-3 classrooms in B.C. Diane last presented the program Nationally to educators at the Canada Character Conference held in Abbotsford, B.C. October 2015.

diane-nelson-w-gordon-campbellDiane’s leadership style is marked by her entrepreneurial spirit. Her accomplishments are numerous including founding, owning and operating the Vancouver Griffins, the first women’s professional hockey team in Western Canada, a member of the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL). The team featured Olympians such as Nancy Drolet, Cammi Granato, Shelley Looney and Courtney Kennedy. In November, 2010, Cammi Granato was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. Many of her Griffins’ artifacts are on display in the Hockey Hall of Fame, including the signing of her first pro contract with the Griffins’ organization. In 2002, the BC Sports Hall of Fame recognized Diane for her achievements in sport as part of an exclusive group of 35 outstanding women leaders and legends.

A long time athlete, she has competed in numerous sports including half marathons, 10km runs, triathlons, dragon boating, field hockey, figure skating, bodybuilding and swimming. Some highlights include 6 gold medals at the 1986 World Lifeguard Championships and Miss Vancouver, 1983 Bodybuilding Championships.

Diane’s entire career has been about giving students an opportunity to better themselves and realize their hopes and aspirations. She firmly believes that enthusiastic and thoughtful guidance is the best way to assist our youth on the path that they choose.

Paul Eberhardt

Paul Eberhardt

Vice Principal Academies

A Vancouver native Paul began his coaching career in 1982 while he was still a student at Magee Secondary and continued coaching as he got both his Bachelor of Physical Education and Bachelor of Education from the University of British Columbia. He also earned his Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Phoenix in 2005. He began teaching in the Richmond School District in 1989 where he spent 28 years prior to moving to the West Vancouver School District in 2018 to take on the job of Vice Principal for the Academy Programs.

During his career Coach Ebe has coached just about every sport but his main passion is coaching basketball which he has coached at every level including High School, College, Provincial Teams and the Canadian National Team. Presently Paul is the head coach of the Langara Falcons men’s team and the West Vancouver Highlanders grade 9 boys team. Paul has been recongnized as one of top coaches in the Country as he was selected as the 2013 Canadian Colleges men’s Basketball Coach of the Year. He has also been selected by Sport BC as the Coach of the Year in 2014 and Basketball BC has named him the College Coach of the Year in 2013 & 2014 and the High School Coach of the Year in 2007 and 2011. Paul’s colleagues also recognized him as the PACWEST Coach of the Year in 2013, 1014 & 2017 as well as Richmond Coach of the Year in 2011 and the Lower Mainland Coach of the Year in 2007.

Paul has been chosen to lead our BC Provincial teams on numerous occasions winning five gold medals and one silver at the Western Canada Games and one silver medal and three bronze at the Canadian National Championships. Paul was also selected to be an assistant coach with the Canadian Men’s National Basketball Team from 2000 to 2004.

Paul is also one of only two coaches in the Country to have won both a High School Provincial Championship which he did in 2011 with the Palmer Griffins and a Canadian College National Championship in 2014 with the Langara Falcons.

Paul has also been very actively involved in athletic administration as he was an Athletic Director for over 20 years and he has also served on the Board of Directors for the Nighthoops Program which works with at-risk youth in Vancouver. Paul has also worked with with Basketball BC on a number of occassions serving as the chair for a variety of the elite programs and he was the longest serving President of the BC High School Boys Basketball Association serving from 2014 to 2018. For all his voluneer work in high school sports BC School Sports recognized Paul with a Special Merit award in 2018. Presently, Paul is the head coach of the Langara Falcons men’s team and the West Vancouver Highlanders Junior boys team.

Tara Ledingham

Tara Ledingham

Assistant

Tara was raised in West Vancouver and attended UBC and SFU, graduating with a double major in Sociology and Communications.

Since graduating, Tara has been employed in the human resources field for over twenty years.  She initially worked as a recruitment specialist for Medical Recruiters International Canada, placing medical professionals in hospital and clinic settings in the United States.

After taking time off to raise her two children, Tara was hired by Mackay CEO Forums as a meeting and event planner before starting with West Vancouver Schools in 2016.

Tara has also enjoyed contract work with BC Children’s Hospital and the Crystal Ball Foundation and was registrar for the North Shore Inline Hockey league.

Being a part of the West Vancouver community has always been important to Tara and she spent several years managing her children’s sports teams and volunteering at the school level.

Teacher/Coaches

Greg Meldrum

Greg Meldrum

WVS Teacher / Head Coach

Raised in West Vancouver, Greg began his basketball career as a “Highlander” at WVSS. In 1991, he was recruited by the University of Victoria where he played five years with the “Vikes.”

After graduating in 1996 with a Kinesiology Degree and finishing as UVIC’s 3rd all-time leading scorer, Greg embarked on a professional basketball career which spanned for 10 years playing for teams in New Zealand, France, England, and Spain.

Greg was also a member of the Canadian Men’s National Basketball Team from 1999-2002 and he represented his country at the 2002 World Championships.  When Greg hung up his basketball shoes in 2005, he attended UBC and earned his Bachelor of Education Degree and began his teaching career.

Greg is a certified “Train to Compete” coach through Canada Basketball and he has been a Head Coach at the West Van Schools Premier Basketball Academy since its inception in 2013.

Additionally, Greg has coached at West Van Secondary for the past 10 years, highlighted by leading the 2014 WVSS Junior Boys to a Provincial Championship, the first in the school’s history.

Richard Schick

Richard Schick

WVS Supervising Teacher / Assistant Coach

Richard is currently the Head Coach of Volleyball Canada’s National Excellence Program responsible for the identification, evaluation, recruitment and training of prospective and current National Team athletes.

(https://volleyball.ca/en/news/women-s-training-centre-coach-announced)

Richard Schick is former Head Coach of the University of British Columbia (UBC) Thunderbirds (2003-2016).

During his time at UBC, he re-established the program leading the team back to the CIS National Championship for the first time in 18 years (‘07/’08).

Amassing the 4th most wins in the Canada West conference during his tenure, the Thunderbirds were a perennial nationally ranked Top 10 team, producing many players that went on to represent Canada and compete internationally on both the Canadian National Beach and Indoor Teams.

Before Richard’s time at UBC, he coached at his Alma Mater University of Alberta where he led the team to a Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) National Gold (’02) and Silver Medal (’03) during his 2 years with the Golden Bears.

Richard’s first experience as Head Coach was at Red Deer College where he coached the squad to a Canadian College Athletic Association (CCAA) National Championship (’01) in his only year at the helm.

Richard also spent time with the Canadian Junior National Program as an assistant coach where the team competed at the 2002 NORCECA Championship in Kelowna, BC and 2003 World Championships in Tehran, Iran.

Richard also was Head Coach for the Junior Team which represented Canada at the NORCECA Championships in Winnipeg, MB in 2004.

Having played multiple sports growing up in Manitoba, Richard got his first experience playing post-secondary volleyball at the University of Saskatchewan (’91). After a couple years of travelling throughout Europe, Richard continued his education and athletic career at Red Deer College where he helped the Kings win back-to-back CCAA National Championships (‘95/’96) and was named a CCAA All Canadian both years.

The following year saw Richard move on to the University of Alberta where the Canada West All-Star helped the Golden Bears to a CIAU National Championship (’97). The following year was spent playing and teaching English in Japan until a return to Edmonton to finish up his Education Degree and play his final year with the Golden Bears.

A bronze medal at the ’99 National Championships led to a contract offer to play more professional volleyball, in the German Bundesliga with DTV Duren (‘00/’01).

Richard Schick holds an Education Degree (English/Physical Education) from the University of Alberta.  He has received NCCP certification in the sports of volleyball, basketball and soccer and actively coaches youth soccer and little league baseball in his community.

Klaus Heck

Klaus Heck

WVS Supervising Teacher / Assistant Coach

Klaus taught Physical Education in the Vancouver School District for 33 years, serving as Department Head for 23 of those years.  In addition, he was Principal and Vice-Principal, Vancouver School District Summer School, was on the Board of Directors for BC High School Track & Field and was named to the BC High School Track & Field Hall of Fame in 2007.  Klaus was also head coach for five consecutive Vancouver City Championship teams at Point Grey Secondary School in Vancouver.

Klaus joined the WVS Premier Sports Academies in 2008 and has overseen Hockey, Baseball, Basketball, Soccer, Field Hockey, Tennis, Rugby, and Table Tennis.  During his time in West Vancouver Schools, Klaus has coached both boys’ and girls’ basketball teams at various grade levels.

Klaus is past President of BC High School Boys Basketball Association where he initiated the 20-Team format that has been used for the AAA tournament for two decades and launched the original slam dunk and three-point shot contests.  He has been recognized as a Lifetime Honourary Member by the Association and is currently Chairman of the Past Presidents’ Association.

Klaus obtained his Bachelor of Education and his Master of Education specializing in Administration from Western Washington University, where he played basketball and competed in track & field.

Ryan Lenarduzzi

Ryan Lenarduzzi

Assistant Coach

I believe in the power of sport and I have built my career around this foundation. Sport provides the opportunity to test personal limits, gain insight into human nature and hone life skills. Socially, sport has the power to bring people together, create community and most importantly make people happy. I utilize a wealth of diverse experience, both professional and athletic, to harness the power of sport through basketball training, youth sport programs, partnerships and events and management services to create meaningful and positive experiences.

Current Projects, Partnerships and Coaching:

  • Head Coach/Founder – North Shore Basketball Academy
  • Head Coach – West Vancouver Schools Premier Basketball Academy
  • Programming partnership with Squamish Nation.
  • Personal Basketball Coaching

Experience:

  • Business Development Manager – Fortius Sport & Health
  • Athletic Coordinator and Sports Camps Manager – Capilano University
  • Program Manager – Douglas College Sports Camps
  • Player Development Coach – Capilano University Men’s Basketball
  • University Athlete (Basketball)

Playing info:

Highschool:
North Shore All-Star averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds (Handsworth)

College:
UPEI
Cap U (Hold single game rebounding record)

Kaitlyn Burke

Kaitlyn Burke

Assistant Coach

Kaitlyn is the founder and owner of New Heights Basketball Academy and has been involved in the West Van Schools Premier Girls RTC Basketball Academy for the past five years. Kaitlyn has always been a coach. She was a natural point guard and was always an extension of her coach on the floor at every level. Kaitlyn received a full ride Division 1 basketball scholarship to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her career is highlighted by leading the Huskers to 2008, 2009 and 2012 NCAA tournament. Kaitlyn ranks second on Nebraska’s career games played and ninth on Nebraska’s career three-point list.

Kaitlyn had the honour of playing for Team BC and Team Canada on several occasions. She was a member of various B.C. Provincial Teams from 2003-06 and was a member of the inaugural National Elite Development Academy run by Canada Basketball. In each of those years, Kaitlyn was elected as team captain and was awarded the MVP of the Under-17 National Championships in 2006. Kaitlyn played for team Canada starting in 2005 on the Cadet National Team. In 2006 and 2007 Kaitlyn represented Canada at the Jr. National team level where she helped the team qualify for the World Championships. The following year Kaitlyn played with team Canada on the Development National Team. Kaitlyn attended Argyle Secondary in North Vancouver where she led the Pipers to North Shore Titles in 2002, 2003 and 2004.

Kaitlyn brings her knowledge, skills and energy to every team, group and individual training session she is a part of. Helping develop young women, growing the women’s game of basketball in Canada and serving as a role model to youth has been something Kaitlyn prides herself in.

Blake Poritz

Blake Poritz

Assistant Coach

Coach Blake is one of the commissioners of the RBL Basketball program. Blake grew up playing RBL as his dad Richard helped start the league in 1997. He played on RBL provincial teams and represented RBL at the U-15 BC club championships as a teammate of former NBA player Robert Sacre.

Blake played his high school basketball at Sir Winston Churchill high school in Vancouver. He helped them qualify for the senior boy’s provincials and he was named Lower Mainland MVP that year after averaging 38.5ppg in the lower mainland tournament. He graduated in 2006.

Following his graduation Blake played collegiately for Capilano College at the CCAA level for one year before making the jump to the CIS level and playing for St. Francis Xavier University.

Coach Blake has also represented Canada internationally on the Canadian Maccabiah team. He played as a junior (u-19) in 2005 and on the open men’s team in 2013.

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